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Old 06-30-2012   #1
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Default NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

Professional football, America's most popular and profitable sport, is preparing to tackle a glaring weakness: Stadiums are increasingly empty.

As part of sweeping changes designed to give teams more flexibility to fill their seats, the National Football League is watering down its controversial TV "blackout" rule, which restricts local broadcasts for games that aren't sellouts. And this season, for the first time, fans in the stadium will be able to watch the same instant replays the referees see during reviews of controversial calls.
http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000...707417526.html
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Old 06-30-2012   #2
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

Only thing that's going to solve that problem for the league is prices dropping, and I won't promise even then that the increase in butts-in-seats would actually mean more revenue.

The money involved is BEYOND RIDICULOUS, and that includes ticket prices.

Sorry, I don't have an answer. My answer is television and NFL Rewind, which I love. It works for me. I don't pay for concussions and life-long knee and back issues, because I can't afford it and I don't buy things I can't afford.
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Old 06-30-2012   #3
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

The black out rule is ridiculous and counter productive. IMO if the average fan is not seeing the home team on TV they are probably not going to follow that team as much, hence not going to have the desire to go to the games.

I didn't become an Oilers fan as a kid until they started being on TV all of the time (when Earl arrived). Before that I didn't know or care much about them.

Here the Bucs are advertising free parking and half priced concessions (not including beer) for the opening game to get people to come. The economy in this part of Florida, especially the Tampa Bay area is really depressed.

So according to this article the league will lift the blackout if 85% of the seats are sold. IMO that is fair however I agree that they should make the games more affordable (and there is no reason why they can't do that considering most of their money comes from broadcasting deals).

As a kid the Bucs were my other favorite team besides the Oilers so it would be nice to have them on TV here as an option. According to the article the Bucs averaged 86% so I assume with this new rule they will not be blacked out anymore.
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Old 06-30-2012   #4
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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Originally Posted by HJam72 View Post
Only thing that's going to solve that problem for the league is prices dropping, and I won't promise even then that the increase in butts-in-seats would actually mean more revenue.

The money involved is BEYOND RIDICULOUS, and that includes ticket prices.
I have seats I absolutely love and I have to say I have started to question keeping them. It is $400 for me to walk in the door each weekend. I originally signed up to have a family experience I never had. Now it isn't a family experience because the only people around you are companies.
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Old 06-30-2012   #5
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

Not just seats, how about merch sales? More people will want more swag with the more football they see.

Blackouts are the NFL basically crossing their arms, stamping their feet and pouting. They should do away with them completely. As fun as it is to see the Jags stadium tarped up, it would be even better to have a serious fan base to be rivals with.
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Old 06-30-2012   #6
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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Originally Posted by infantrycak View Post
I have seats I absolutely love and I have to say I have started to question keeping them. It is $400 for me to walk in the door each weekend. I originally signed up to have a family experience I never had. Now it isn't a family experience because the only people around you are companies.
Same here Chris! Just don't know how much longer I can afford it, now that I'm retired. I LOVE live football, tailgating, seeing all my friends on gameday, feeling the emotions and sharing the excitement of 70+ thousand fans in the same building, watching our boys run through that tunnel, high fiving and hugging my seatmates, regardless of who they are, meeting new fans every gameday, and just enjoying my favorite sport with other fans. It's getting tough, and it breaks my heart just thinking I might have to give it all up. BUT, I see that day coming and there's not a damn thing I can do about it. This game I love has become a game for the wealthy, and that leaves me OUT!!
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Old 06-30-2012   #7
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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As fun as it is to see the Jags stadium tarped up, it would be even better to have a serious fan base to be rivals with.


I never thought I would find myself defending the Jags however here goes. Living in central Florida I have now driven through Jax several times. One thing that I have noticed on the highways there are a lot of cars sporting Jags stickers, plates, etc.

Looking at last year's attendance records from that article I was very surprised by the Jags numbers. The Jags averaged 62,331. Just compare that to other teams.

The Jags have higher attendance than many other teams including the Chicago Bears. Granted the Bears stadium is smaller and sold out however the facts are there are typically more fans at a Jags game than a Bears game.

Another surprising fact is the Jags are only averaging 600 and change less than the Steelers in attendance. Unlike the Bears, Heinz Field can hold more because they were not at full capacity according to that chart. This and the Steelers have a huge following nationally. I see more more Steelers stuff on cars around here than any other NFL team including the locals (Bucs, Jags, Dolphins).

Speaking of the Dolphins and Bucs, the Jags are topping both of those teams in ticket sales. So of all 3 NFL teams in Florida the Jags are #1 in ticket sales.

As for the infamous tarps. That stadium is huge and was built with college football crowds in mind. I don't know what the capacity is without the tarps, however with the tarps covering huge sections the official capacity it still at 67,164 according to that chart. That is more than 11 other NFL stadiums which include stadiums of the Bears, Raiders, Colts, Vikings, Lions, Cardinals, Steelers, Bengals, Bucs, Rams, and Seahawks.

I know we like busting on the Jags saying they don't deserve a team, etc. However the facts show otherwise. That all being said I still hate the team, however they are clearly supported up there.
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Old 06-30-2012   #8
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

Wow. They think fans aren't going because the NFL stadium experience hasn't improved? I doubt having wireless in every stadium, being able to listen to on-field mics, and allowing PA announcers to speak on 3rd downs is going to get people to fill the seats. What a joke by the NFL. They're just turning their heads and ignoring the obvious. Ticket prices are too damn high!

The optimist in me says owners will realize this and actually do something about it when more and more teams can't sell out their games, but I'm not so sure. Who care about all that extra stuff? It still doesn't justify the cost of pricing out your average NFL fan from the stadium.
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Old 06-30-2012   #9
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

If the Texans couldn't sell out games, and the blackout rule continued on, I'd never see them play except on replay broadcasts. There is no way in hell I am I spending the kind of money the NFL wants these days for those damn tickets. I had season tickets for the Oilers and the Gamblers, and loved it. As a percentage of my paycheck, the tickets were less expensive back then and I made much less than I do now.

Todays NFL is overpriced. But, for those who do spend the money, you have my heartfelt thanks for keeping them on TV.

And I still have some ticket stubs from a few Gambler games. In fact, I have a few full tickets that weren't used and are in excellent full condition. I keep hoping they might be worth something someday.
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Old 06-30-2012   #10
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

Nothing to do with blackouts, just didn't want to start a thread.

Ticker on the bottom of NFL network today (Sat) says Goodell has sent a memo to all 32 teams laying out ground rules for team relocation to LA and that re-location could take place as soon as 2013 season.

So I guess this could relate to blackouts after all. Buy the damn tickets or we will re-locate your team.

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Old 06-30-2012   #11
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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Originally Posted by cuppacoffee View Post
Nothing to do with blackouts, just didn't want to start a thread.

Ticker on the bottom of NFL network today (Sat) says Goodell has sent a memo to all 32 teams laying out ground rules for team relocation to LA and that re-location could take place as soon as 2013 season.

So I guess this could relate to blackouts after all. Buy the damn tickets or we will re-locate your team.

The NFL can't forceably relocate a team without the owners consent. That being said, I can't imagine an owner who isn't selling a lot of tickets being against moving the team. LA is a good market.
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Old 06-30-2012   #12
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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The NFL can't forceably relocate a team without the owners consent. That being said, I can't imagine an owner who isn't selling a lot of tickets being against moving the team. LA is a good market.


After what I have wintessed this past week I have come to the conclusion that some people can can force anything they want, with minimal consent.

I was under the impression that NFL tickets were a hard sell in LA.

Only thing going for LA was the TV market.


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Old 06-30-2012   #13
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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Originally Posted by Thorn View Post
The NFL can't forceably relocate a team without the owners consent. That being said, I can't imagine an owner who isn't selling a lot of tickets being against moving the team. LA is a good market.

Meat market........NOT football market. Professional football has repeatedly failed since the 1940's.........and will fail again. The NFL will not only lose half their butt on this one due to "disinterest" by the fan base, but they will lose their other cheek because they will now have lost their blackmail levarage control over many of the teams they have kept hostage over the years.
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Old 06-30-2012   #14
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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Originally Posted by SheTexan View Post
Same here Chris! Just don't know how much longer I can afford it, now that I'm retired. I LOVE live football, tailgating, seeing all my friends on gameday, feeling the emotions and sharing the excitement of 70+ thousand fans in the same building, watching our boys run through that tunnel, high fiving and hugging my seatmates, regardless of who they are, meeting new fans every gameday, and just enjoying my favorite sport with other fans. It's getting tough, and it breaks my heart just thinking I might have to give it all up. BUT, I see that day coming and there's not a damn thing I can do about it. This game I love has become a game for the wealthy, and that leaves me OUT!!
The gameday experience is bar none and what keeps me going.

Gonna go off on a tangent here. I used to take a lot of business relations and a much broader definition of friend than I do now. I became very disenchanted with how people are ungrateful. I just handed you $200 in tickets and you don't even think to buy me a beer or a hot dog? I gave a pair of our tickets to Cowboys fans whose daughter was in the hospital (the dad had been staying with her for almost a month) for a pre-season game and it happened to be the father's birthday (we won) and they have sent us Christmas cards ever since. Wonderful couple (and the little girl is healthy and happy). Now I only take serious football fans.

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Meat market........NOT football market. Professional football has repeatedly failed since the 1940's.........and will fail again. The NFL will not only lose half their butt on this one due to "disinterest" by the fan base, but they will lose their other cheek because they will now have lost their blackmail levarage control over many of the teams they have kept hostage over the years.
I have two uncles and their families out in LA and you're right. The NFL is fascinated by the TV market but the folks just don't care. If anything they will go watch the University for Spoiled Children (sorry Brian) or UCLA.
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Old 07-01-2012   #15
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

Just in case no one has heard, Goodell and the NFL has made it a requirement that any new stadium to be built in L.A. must be able to accomodate TWO teams. This has been made in anticipation of teams made up of combinations of two existing teams, two expansion teams or one existing team with one expansion team. L.A. has never been able to support ONE team...........
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Old 07-02-2012   #16
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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Originally Posted by SheTexan View Post
Same here Chris! Just don't know how much longer I can afford it, now that I'm retired. I LOVE live football, tailgating, seeing all my friends on gameday, feeling the emotions and sharing the excitement of 70+ thousand fans in the same building, watching our boys run through that tunnel, high fiving and hugging my seatmates, regardless of who they are, meeting new fans every gameday, and just enjoying my favorite sport with other fans. It's getting tough, and it breaks my heart just thinking I might have to give it all up. BUT, I see that day coming and there's not a damn thing I can do about it. This game I love has become a game for the wealthy, and that leaves me OUT!!
I feel your pain, Gma! You know I had to give up my season tickets when baby girl was born. I miss the hustle and bustle of going to all the games, but I have to admit that I greatly enjoy having both my young'uns on my lap in my easy chair. I know these will be memories that my kids will have when they are adults and watching football with my grandkids.

You can always do what Jungle Bob and I are doing: commit to at least one regular season game a season, and then save up to ensure that you go to every playoff game at Reliant! I don't care what it costs, but playoff games are worth every penny. Awesome experience with lifelong memories.

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The gameday experience is bar none and what keeps me going.

Gonna go off on a tangent here. I used to take a lot of business relations and a much broader definition of friend than I do now. I became very disenchanted with how people are ungrateful. I just handed you $200 in tickets and you don't even think to buy me a beer or a hot dog? I gave a pair of our tickets to Cowboys fans whose daughter was in the hospital (the dad had been staying with her for almost a month) for a pre-season game and it happened to be the father's birthday (we won) and they have sent us Christmas cards ever since. Wonderful couple (and the little girl is healthy and happy). Now I only take serious football fans.
That's just common etiquette that is being ignored, IMO. Like the Seinfeld episode of the day-after-thank-you call. Take care of the generous offer by at least buying some drink and grub. It seems like common sense.

I have been very fortunate to receive game invites, and I sincerely hope that I left a good impression on all my benefactors. If not, my bad.
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Old 07-02-2012   #17
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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I have seats I absolutely love and I have to say I have started to question keeping them. It is $400 for me to walk in the door each weekend. I originally signed up to have a family experience I never had. Now it isn't a family experience because the only people around you are companies.
It's less for me (with only 2 seats to boot), but ~$250 Game with parking.

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Same here Chris! Just don't know how much longer I can afford it, now that I'm retired. I LOVE live football, tailgating, seeing all my friends on gameday, feeling the emotions and sharing the excitement of 70+ thousand fans in the same building, watching our boys run through that tunnel, high fiving and hugging my seatmates, regardless of who they are, meeting new fans every gameday, and just enjoying my favorite sport with other fans. It's getting tough, and it breaks my heart just thinking I might have to give it all up. BUT, I see that day coming and there's not a damn thing I can do about it. This game I love has become a game for the wealthy, and that leaves me OUT!!
With two little ones to suck up funds, I see that day approaching for me as well. Heck, as much as I enjoyed the playoff game, it was D**N expensive to pay for with Xmas in the mix.

Fortuantely, at least for now, I'll continue to enjoy tailgating with my extended-family in the Blue Crew and my fellow crazies in the Bull Pen!
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Old 07-03-2012   #18
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

Here is more on this from Tampa Bay http://www.tampabay.com/sports/footb...aneers/1238186

According to this article the Bucs have started reducing ticket prices ..

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Prices on 80 percent of seats have been reduced, with other prices remaining flat for a fourth consecutive season. Some of the discounts were steep; select lower-level end zone seats, which last season were priced at $89, are now $75 per game on season-ticket plans.
While the Texans have been selling out they should at least stop raising prices each season. As already evidenced here they are going to lose diehard fans going to the games because of their greediness.
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Old 07-03-2012   #19
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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Originally Posted by Hookem Horns View Post
Here is more on this from Tampa Bay http://www.tampabay.com/sports/footb...aneers/1238186

According to this article the Bucs have started reducing ticket prices ..

While the Texans have been selling out they should at least stop raising prices each season. As already evidenced here they are going to lose diehard fans going to the games because of their greediness.
A lot of folks will look at $14 and think what's that to complain about. Well if you have four seats it is almost $600. On top of that fans rather than companies don't get to write their tickets off as a business expense.

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Originally Posted by Double Barrel View Post
That's just common etiquette that is being ignored, IMO. Like the Seinfeld episode of the day-after-thank-you call. Take care of the generous offer by at least buying some drink and grub. It seems like common sense.
You would think but as they say apparently common sense ain't very common.

Edit directed to anyone - how extensive are the corporate seats around you? We have within talking distance two couples both of which have had seats from the beginning. Everything else is corporate.
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Old 07-03-2012   #20
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Default Re: NFL easing up on TV Blackout Rules

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Originally Posted by infantrycak View Post
A lot of folks will look at $14 and think what's that to complain about. Well if you have four seats it is almost $600. On top of that fans rather than companies don't get to write their tickets off as a business expense.

From a book review of "Field of Schemes." Although it is written 2 years ago and about baseball, it still holds very true to our discussion as to what we see today in the NFL. A book worth reading......if you have no blood pressure problems.

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April 06, 2010

Tax-deductible seats and the juicing of ticket prices

Just noticed the op-ed in yesterday's New York Times arguing that the tax deductibility of luxury boxes has ruined baseball:

Quote:
Over the last two decades, the average ticket price for a Chicago Cubs game has increased 265 percent, more than four times the inflation rate. Add in parking, concessions and souvenirs, and a family trip to one of this week's opening day games could easily cost a few hundred dollars.

There are many reasons for the price explosion, but a critical factor has been the ability of businesses to write off tickets as entertainment expenses — essentially a huge, and wholly unnecessary, government subsidy.

These deductions have led to higher ticket prices in two ways. On the demand side, they have fueled competition for scarce seats, with business taxpayers bidding in part with dollars they save through the deductions.

On the supply side, the large number of businesses bidding for expensive seats has driven the expansion of luxury skyboxes and a reduction in overall seats in new ballparks.
It's an issue I've raised before, and Joanna and I noted it way back in the first edition of our book. The deductibility of sports tickets has bounced around a bit — it's currently at 50% of the face value of tickets — but it remains a huge incentive for corporations to pay more than they otherwise would for tickets, driving up prices overall — and helping spur teams to demand new stadiums with more luxury seating that they can sell to the artifically inflated corporate market.

The op-ed authors, Duke law professor Richard Schmalbeck and Rutgers business professor Jay Soled, argue that while it would be ideal to eliminate the business-entertainment deduction for sports tickets entirely, probably a more feasible reform would be to cap the deduction at $50 per seat. That wouldn't end the juicing of ticket prices, but it would at least blunt it somewhat.
From the book jacket:

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"Are you a sports fan distraught over your home team's move to another city? Or someone whose city has just lured a team to your home turf with a brand new stadium? Or maybe you don't follow sports, but as a taxpayer are outraged over cutbacks in school funding and other services."--BOOK JACKET. "Forget about the false tales of "welfare queens" who supposedly rode around in Cadillacs. Field of Schemes introduces you to some real welfare kings."--BOOK JACKET. "A used-car salesman turned baseball owner promises to pay for a new stadium out of his own pocket, if the state government just agrees to move a highway to clear the land. Several backroom deals later, the state is raising a quarter-billion dollars towards the stadium costs - and the team owner is getting his stadium scot-free."--BOOK JACKET. "The billionaire co-founder of Microsoft wants to buy a football team, but only if the state will build him a new stadium first. So he pays the $4 million cost of a referendum - even as his camp spends millions more in advertising to make sure he wins. In exchange, he gets at least $300 million in public money to build his team's new home."--BOOK JACKET.
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